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Democratic equality and the problem of persistent minorities

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Abstract

L'A. se propose de reconcilier les deux affirmations apparemment contradictoires selon lequelles l'egalite democratique est intrinsequement juste et l'existence de minorites persistantes profondement injuste. la cle de cette reconciliation reside dans le fait que le critere d'egalite est different selon l'un et l'autre cas: il s'agit d'une part de l'egalite des ressources et, d'autr part, d'une egale distribution de la satisfaction des interets

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... I will also not base my present argument on "communitarian" or "republican" versions of normative political philosophy (Scharpf 2012). Instead, I will turn to a strictly individualistic or "liberal" version of axiomatic democratic theory which bypasses these issues and to an author who has explicated a deductive justification of straightforward majority rule derived from normatively undisputed egalitarian principles (Christiano 1996). ...
... Any super-majoritarian rules or institutions would favor some preferences over others -generally, the defenders of the status quo over the promoters of change. But the two principles justifying simple majority rule come into conflict with each other when they are applied in real-world constellations where the specific preferences of "persistent minorities" would never have a chance to influence the outcomes (Christiano 1994(Christiano , 2010Ganghof 2005: 758-759). Under these conditions -Christiano refers to the situation of Catholics in Northern Ireland as an illustration -egalitarian democratic theory must allow for the possibility of super-majoritarian correctives. ...
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